How To Improve Your Online Privacy And Security- Best In 2021

Improve Your Online Privacy And Security

Online privacy and security is a popular topic at the moment. Given how many cybersecurity threats there are, it is natural to see more and more people paying attention to warnings from established experts.

Besides, it is no longer just about a computer. Many people have smartphones and tablets, and they rely on these devices for work and entertainment. It is common to believe that only computers are exposed to viruses and other threats and that having reliable antivirus software is enough.

However, the reality is quite different. If you are not careful, you could become the next victim of hackers who target mobile users.

The question is, what can you do besides being generally cautious to avoid personal information exposure and other potential problems stemming from cybersecurity threats? The answer to this question is below.

Ignore Shady Links

Let’s start with shady links. Even if it is someone you know and trust, there is no need to open a suspiciously looking URL just to satisfy your curiosity.

A message could be on social media or a platform like Discord. It can be from someone you know in real life or someone you met online a few days ago.

Spammers might also bombard your email box with promotional offers or so-called congratulatory emails about how you have won something. Well, as a rule of thumb, you should block email Gmail or other email services sends to your inbox. Or, at the very least, go to the settings and redirect these messages to the spam folder.

Avoid Oversharing Information

How to Improve Your Online Privacy

Oversharing information is another common problem that many people face. For those who spend their time at home, it can get quite lonely, particularly now when there is a global pandemic.

Given the situation, these people look for friends online without considering potential dangers. Just because someone is friendly online, it does not mean that they are trustworthy.

Striking a conversation and slowly building a relationship with a stranger online means that you will likely overshare some personal information eventually. And when you do, they might use the information against you, like figuring out what your password is after you revealed your pet’s name or birthday.

Sure, these things may be a bit of a stretch, but given the risks of cybersecurity threats these days, there is no shame in taking extra precautions to protect yourself.

Invest in Virtual Private Networks

First of all, do not bother with free virtual private networks. Those are not secure. Instead, find a reliable service and pay them a few dollars a month to have a proper VPN.

Virtual private networks mask your IP address and give you a new one. They also encrypt your browsing history and make it difficult to trace your steps on the internet.

A VPN gives access to geo-restricted content if you wish to gain that. For instance, if you cannot access a Russian or Chinese website, you can switch to the right IP address and forget about the problem.

Lastly, VPNs come with security protocols that come in handy when you have to join public Wi-Fi in hotels, cafes, libraries, and other places. Since public internet lacks security measures, joining it on any of your devices without a virtual private network will spell trouble.

Expose of Old Hardware Properly

Online Privacy and Security

If you are giving or throwing away an old computer, smartphone, tablet, hard drive, or another device or piece of hardware that may have some of your personal data on it, make sure to wipe the information completely.

You never know when someone with bad intentions might get their hands on your personal information and take advantage of it. Better to be safe than sorry.

Use AdBlocker Extensions

Ad blockers improve the overall internet browsing experience by eliminating annoying advertisements online, but there is more.

An important thing to note is that some advertisements may redirect you to a landing page that is running with malware, ransomware, and other threats. And if you end up on such a page, having reliable antivirus software may not be enough to help you.

Update Your Devices

Online Privacy and Security1

Regular device updates should also be one of the priorities. Besides new features and overall performance upgrades, installing the latest operating version also helps to fend off potential threats.

In some cases, OS developers release updates because there is a new threat targeting the users. And if you fail to update your device, you expose it to potential issues.

Change Passwords Regularly

The last piece of advice in this article is about the password policy. Not only should you change your passwords regularly, but it would also help if you use different combinations for different accounts.

Do not use the same password for your emails and social media accounts. Instead, think of different words, phrases, or combinations and use those as your password.

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